We love VR and we wanted to add a multiplayer experience because that was missing from most VR compatible games right now.
What it does
We implemented a multiplayer virtual reality experience where two players can sword fight each other in the same virtual space.
How we built it
We used two HTC Vives and two lighthouses to power this game. In a normal setup each Vive requires two lighthouses each. We then had to implement player tracking in one movement space and then deal with how they interact together. We used Unity to build the game and had to implement methods to deal with passing data between two computers through the network to keep track of the other players in the world.
Challenges we ran into
Our biggest challenge so far has been sending data without much lag to provide a seamless experience for each player and how they see the other player in real time. We solved this by implementing low level apis in unity to optimize the data flow and also temporarily used our own router to prevent network congestion from affecting our gameplay.
Our second challenge was how do we provide a realistic sword build for the user, while still attaching the controller to keep track of the sword. We solved this by creating a custom sword stick and vive controller holder. We used tinker cad to make a custom mold and then 3D printed. We iterated through two different models to find the perfect fit to prevent controller slipping while still keeping the sword stick in place, while providing the user with a comfortable experience.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
Finally getting multiplayer VR setup. VR games are very hard to make and then on top of that we implemented a multiplayer VR experience. This was all done in one user space powered by only two lighthouses.
We are also proud of working with manipulating CAD models for the first time and then working with a 3D printer to make a custom mold to solve our unique hardware problem.
What we learned
Multiplayer VR takes virtual reality to the next level and it so much fun. We also learned a lot about low level Unity APIs and how to implement a multiplayer VR game.
What's next for SwordzVR
We plan to expand the game mechanics and add new maps. Then we are going to polish the user experience as much as possible. We might also release it on Steam Greenlight because we feel there is a lack of VR multiplayer games on the Steam market and we want everyone else to also enjoy this awesome VR experience.
We want to be also be judged specifically for the Design Hack and Hardware hack category